Thousands of Burning Man participants from all corners of the earth migrate their way through the Reno-Tahoe International Airport (RTIA) on their way to Burning Man, making this period the airport’s most popular travel time of the year. We’ve compiled information and a list of resources that will help make your travel through RTIA as smooth as possible.
Reno-Tahoe International Airport
2001 East Plumb Lane – 775-328-6400 – map
- Flights information here.
- Airport information here.
- Airport Frequently Asked Questions here.
- Lost items at the airport info here. Items lost at a Travel Security Administration checkpoint info here. If you believe you lost an item on an airplane, please contact the airline you flew with.
- Wifi is freely available.
- No showers or storage facilities at the airport. Highly recommend you clean up and dress fully before getting to the airport and on the plane as many people are from other walks of life and it’s a common courtesy.
- Do not bring your trash to the airport or to the car-rental agencies! Go here for info on where to take your trash and recyclables.
- There are Prohibited Items that cannot be taken on-board an airplane due to safety requirements. Propane, nitrous oxide canisters (aka “whippits”), lighters, knives, tools, fireworks, and various other liquids and gels are the most common prohibited items. Many people are also unclear on the various regulations regarding what is allowed in baggage vs. carry-on, so take a careful look at the Transportation Security Administration’s listings of prohibited items here. And be sure to properly dispose of them before arrival at the airport.
- No drugs at the airport!
- Finally, you will be treated to a showcase of Burning Man’s impact beyond the playa in Nevada. “Burning Man – Igniting Nevada’s Creative Fire” will be on display from August to October in the airports gallery space between the arrival / departure gates and the security gates. The exhibit includes photography of community events around Nevada and art made, worked on, or placed all over Nevada by Burning Man participants and artists.
New for 2023: The Reno-Tahoe International Airport is undergoing construction in summer of 2023 which may impact your travel. You should arrive at least two hours prior to your flight to accommodate any extra time needed. If you are using Burner Express Air, there is a new BxA location in the airport which necessitates a one-hour walk. Learn more about using Burner Express Air from the Reno-Tahoe International Airport.
The Reno-Tahoe International Airport has their own webpage with info relevant to Burners flying in/out of this airport. Also see relevant info on the Burning Man webpage.
If you’re traveling through the Reno-Tahoe International Airport and looking to donate your bike, they are now accepting limited bike donations from those embarking from the airport. Hours of operation for bike donation:
Friday 3pm – 7pm
Saturday 3pm – 7pm
Sunday 8am – 6pm
Monday 8am -6pm
Air Playa Info
Through the coordinated efforts of the Burning Man Project, the Reno-Tahoe International Airport, and local and international resources, Air Playa Info was established in 2008 to provide information and resources for travelers on their way from the airport to Burning Man.
Located next to Baggage Claim inside the airport, volunteers at the Air Playa Info table help answer your questions, provide directions and maps, and share information about Black Rock City, means of transportation, and all kinds of Reno resources.
Air Playa Info will be available 9am-10pm on Friday before Burning Man begins through Thursday during Burning Man.
Finally, please Leave No Trace at Air Playa Info and the airport!
Transportation to the Playa
The various means available to get to Black Rock City from the airport include air, bus, rideshare and rental car. However you get to the playa, it really is best to have your means of transportation arranged before you begin your departure for Reno. After landing in Reno, check in at Air Playa Info, as aside from information on other resources, some of these options are coordinated with the help of its volunteers.
– BUS TRAVEL TO BLACK ROCK CITY
In an effort to reduce traffic and limit the environmental impact of the event, Burning Man has contracted with The BusBank to offer the Burner Express. This service also offers speedier entry and departure from BRC and reserved camping for participants. Buses will depart twice daily from the airport to BRC from Saturday before through Thursday of the event. Return buses will also be available from Friday of the event through Tuesday after the event. One has the option of taking an express bus straight to Black Rock City, or one has the option of taking a bus that will make a pit-stop at the Save Mart Supermarket to get supplies. Go here for more info and here to reserve your seat.
– AIR TRAVEL TO BLACK ROCK CITY
There are various air charters that offer flights daily between Reno-Tahoe International Airport and Black Rock City Municipal Airport before, during, and after Burning Man. Go here for the listing of approved air charters and other BRC flight information.
– RENTAL CAR
There are several rental car agencies that operate at the Reno-Tahoe International Airport. Check out the listings in the yellow pages here.
In case you are unable to arrange means of transportation to the playa before landing in Reno, you also have a few Rideshare possibilities.
First, experience proves that for many participants, a ride to the playa is possible directly from the airport. Many fellow participants fly in just like you, and many of them rent cars and are generous when it comes to sharing a seat on their way to Burning Man. You may also be able to get some supplies with them, as most everyone flying into Reno has to obtain supplies in the region before heading out to BRC.
A few helpful tips for possibly landing a ride to the playa from the airport:
- Check in at Air Playa Info inside the airport. Most Burning Man participants will stop by here and the Air Playa Info volunteers can be of help in figuring out your options.
- Offering to chip in for gas is a plus!
- Everyone in the vehicle must be wearing a seatbelt — it’s the law.
- Be comfortable with those with whom you may share a ride.
The second location to go to in Reno for ridesharing is the rideshare base at Save Mart on Keystone Avenue. This location is a 10 minute drive from the Reno Airport, next to Interstate 80 (the primary highway Burners take to BRC). It is also the busiest spot in Reno during Burning Man. In case you do not have means of transportation to the playa, are unable to negotiate a ride from the airport to the playa, or want to get some supplies, this is your next best option, as the experience of previous years proves that you should be able to negotiate a ride here without too long of a wait. The Rideshare Base, where you shall please Leave No Trace, is at:
If you need to get to the Rideshare Base, you have several options:
- Rideshare – Check in at Air Playa Info. You may be able to negotiate a ride from the airport to the Rideshare Base (if not to the playa).
- Taxi – A taxi should cost you around $12 to the rideshare base. MAKE SURE you tell the taxi driver to use the freeway. You can check in with Air Playa Info to find people with whom to possibly share a taxi to the Rideshare Base.
- Regional Transportation – No direct bus routes from the airport to the Rideshare Base. If you don’t mind taking a few different buses via transfers, check out the RTC website for bus routes and schedules here.
Directions to Black Rock City, NV
Here’s how to get to Burning Man from the Reno-Tahoe International Airport. Travel time is approximately 3 hours.
- Upon leaving the airport you will find yourself westwards onto Plumb Lane. US-395 is about 1/4 mile ahead.
- On Plumb Lane, get in right lane, take US-395 NORTH
- About 2 1/2 miles north, you will see signs for I-80
- Get in right lane, take I-80 EAST
- There are two routes to take from here:
- Route 1 – From Reno, Nevada, take Hwy I-80 east 28 miles. Take the Wadsworth / Pyramid Lake Exit #43. You can get gas here. Then, go north one mile to Wadsworth and turn left, staying on Hwy 447. It’s 78 miles to Gerlach, and then 8 miles north on State Route 34 to BRC.
- Route 2 – From Reno, take Hwy I-80 east 4 miles. Take Pyramid Way Exit #18 to Hwy 445. Turn left and travel north 31 miles. At Pyramid Lake, turn right on Hwy 446 and go east 12 miles to Nixon. You can get gas here. Turn left on Hwy 447, traveling north. 54 miles to Gerlach, and then 8 miles north on State Route 34 to BRC.
Reno-Sparks Resources and Storage
We recommend checking out the thorough listing of Reno-Sparks resources found in the Reno Pages for what you may need before making the journey to the playa. Most everyone flying or driving through the region needs to get supplies and these chock-full pages are intended for you. Also, if you are interested in storing some of your camping or other supplies for next year (rather than parting with them), check out the storage facilities near the airport here.